Wildflower Walk in June

Waltham St. Lawrence

This lovely walk begins on a public footpath in the village of Waltham St. Lawrence just past the allotments, opposite Paradise cottages. After a short stretch of woodland the path turns diagonally to the left and then a sharp right hand turn will take you across cow fields which are full of buttercups at this time of year. Reaching a quiet country road at the end, a row of cottages ‘Tied Cottages’ should be passed on the left.

Wildflowers

In the fields plenty of wildflowers can be enjoyed. Keep you eyes peeled for these as they are often very tiny and low to the ground. Red clover is plentiful and if you are lucky you may also spot the less common Zig-zag clover as well as plenty of tiny yellow flowers of another type of clover- Black medick. In the road-side ditches, plenty of larger umbellifers and these can often be a challenge to identify, including one with large pompoms looking a lot like Cowbane – one of the less common types in this part of the world.

Shottesbrook Park

Shottesbrook park includes a picturesque lake which is surrounded by plenty of water-loving Yellow Iris. Close to the lake’s edge the frilly petals of another water loving plant – Bogbean can be found.

Around Shottesbrook Lake

St. John the Baptist Church

Shottesbrook church has a notably dramatic spire. There are plenty of Speedwell and other common wildflowers in the churchyard. The bright blooms of Red Valerian seems to thrive under the shadow of the yew trees in the churchyard.

Tied Cottages

Continuing along the path passed the church at Shottesbrook, you will eventually return to the the row of Tied cottages that were previously passed going the other way. Along the roadside a few Perennial Cornflowers– most likely garden escapes and some bright pink Common Mallow can be seen at this time of year.

Woodlands and Fields

The last section of the walk also includes short stretches of woodland and open fields where large swathes of wood speedwell turn the ground beside the path into a bright blue carpet.

Burial grounds

Before reaching Waltham St. Lawrence village centre, a narrow footpath passes the local burial grounds and here there are various types of Forget- Me-Nots and Speedwells grow profusely among the red clover and plantains.

Conclusion

Village Centre

This walk has good paths and is on flat ground with a couple of easy stiles. Towards the end of this flat walk, in the centre of the village the Bell Pub can offer welcome refreshments. This characterful pub, is also dog friendly.

Happy Wildflower hunting in June .

********************

Kim Mackenzy Andrews is a children’s book author, nature writer, photographer, and artist.

Find her Nature books for children on Amazon.

Wildlife articles for nature lovers: – patch reporting for the BBC Wildlife magazine.

Kim Mackenzy Andrews - Childrens Author

Kim Mackenzy Andrews  Children’s Author
https//: www.facebook.com/KimMackenzyAndrewsChildrensAuthor
Twitter:@Kim_M_Andrews

 *PARENTS* Get your FREE play with nature activity ideas here.

Wildflower Walk in May

Hosehill Lake

This is a lakeside walk suitable for any time of year but I enjoyed this easy circular walk in mid May. Dogs are permitted but there are signs asking for dogs to be kept under control to prevent them disturbing the nesting birds. This is a popular nature reserve for those bird watchers, particularly, wetland birds. It also boasts a wildflower meadow. The site is managed by
Bucks, Berks and Oxon Wildlife Trust. https://www.bbowt.org.uk/nature-reserves/hosehill-lake

Hosehill Lake information board
Hosehill Lake information board near the entrance.

Bird Sanctuary

As mentioned, this nature reserve is also a thriving bird sanctuary. You will spot many bird boxes in the trees as well as viewing platforms and bird hides around the lake. This place is popular with local bird twitchers
www.berksbirds.co.uk/, dog walkers,who may also appreciate the local dog friendly pub, www.foxandhoundstheale.co.uk/ and ramblers.
www.ramblers.org.uk/berkshire

Lakeside Views

The views across the lake are stunning with plenty of variety. This gentle walk certainly encourages a sense of mental wellbeing, with its small beaches and the gentle waves lapping the shores. There are also plenty of reed beds rustling with wildlife. Fortunately there are also many viewing platforms and rustic seats dotted around the lake’s edge from which to enjoy these beautiful peaceful views. If you want to spot the wide variety waterfowl, then a good pair of binoculars will prove very useful.

Wildflower Meadow

To the east and south of the lake the land is reserved as meadow. The eastern meadow is cut and then grazed by wild Exmoor ponies for a short period in the spring and autumn. In the southern meadow there is a butterfly bank. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hosehill_Lake

More Wildflowers

The wildflower meadow to the east of the lake is a visual treat with its abundance of wildflowers throughout the spring and summer months. After that it is cut and then grazed by Exmoor ponies.

Conclusion

narrow bridge
narrow bridge

This wildflower walk in May will take you along a mixture of grass and surfaced paths. Whilst fairly flat around northern part of the lake the paths become more undulating to south. This makes it tricky for pushchairs or buggies unless they are the off road variety. The narrow bridges do add charm to the walk. Some of the paths can be muddy in winter. The walk is approximately one mile, but can easily take up to one hour at a slow pace as there are many interesting places to stop and enjoy the views.

Happy Wildflower hunting in May.

********************

Kim Mackenzy Andrews is a children’s book author, nature writer, photographer, and artist.

Find her Nature books for children on Amazon.

Wildlife articles for nature lovers: – patch reporting for the BBC Wildlife magazine.

Kim Mackenzy Andrews - Childrens Author

Kim Mackenzy Andrews  Children’s Author
https//: www.facebook.com/KimMackenzyAndrewsChildrensAuthor
Twitter:@Kim_M_Andrews

 *PARENTS* Get your FREE play with nature activity ideas here.